Being a business owner can be hard work.
I know it’s easy for people to look at entrepreneurs and feel like we’ve got it sorted.
Freedom. Choice. Flexibility.
But for most of us, we’re like swans swimming gracefully around with our legs frantically paddling below the surface.
And there’s a couple of serious issues which seem to affect women in business in particular.
I call them the WEEDS because they strangle beautiful blooming flowers and they need pulling out at the roots and exterminating. Whatever it takes. If they aren’t weeded out, they strangle the groundwork of your business and take over all the wonderful buds you’ve got going on up there.
To be a Beautiful Sunflower, we need to exterminate the weeds.
Here’s my top 5 weeds which strangle our business success:
This is there for all business owners.
Fear of all sorts of things, such as people rejecting our ideas, not buying our products, running out of money, being out-competed in the market place. Not innovating enough, or innovating too much. Growing too fast or not growing fast enough.
You get the drift.
And perhaps the most damaging fear is “I don’t know what to do.” So as a result, you do nothing. Business owners get easily STUCK in a rut, unsure of the next step. Procrastinating and waiting.
2. Lack of focus.
Yep, there’s never enough hours in the day as a business owner.
We get caught up in our own busy-ness. To-do lists, schedules, goal-setting. A million balls in the air and ultimately not catching any of them well enough.
In small businesses, the owner is a human being. Which can be isolating. I’ve often said “The best part of being a business owner is I don’t have a boss. The worst part of being a business owners is I don’t have a boss.”
No-one to tell you exactly what to do, when to do it, and kicking your ass if you don’t.
So erm, the weed here is that you just don’t do it. Any of it.
Getting thrown off course from our true goals.
Oooh yes so many shiny new things. Especially in the online world. There’s all this stuff you need to know, things you’re meant to invest in, tactics and techniques to master and perfect. Extra skills to learn. Qualifications to acquire. Courses to take and conferences to attend. So this weed is brilliant for helping you to grow weed number 2. Get yourself distracted and there’s no time to focus. But you’re still BUSY which makes you feel, you know, busy and stuff.
4. Under-valuing yourself.
Not recognising or celebrating your talent, your strengths, your uniqueness.
Eurgh. It’s queen of the weeds. Not appreciating your achievements, your value, your skills, your own awesomeness. Therefore undercharging, giving things away for free, not invoicing or chasing debts, not asking for testimonials, not showing up and getting visible, not taking care of your wellbeing, not investing in support or coaching or help to grow. Being mean to yourself when things go wrong and kicking yourself for not achieving x,y,z on the goals when you notice that weeds 1, 2 and 3 are taking grip.
5. Giving up too easily
Too often we give up to avoid failure.
But failure is how we learn. Lurching from failure to failure is actually brilliant in business, because it means that you’re trying new things and learning as you go. But too many women in business hold back from trying new things or we try it once or twice and then declare it a disaster and give up. Grit and determination is required to succeed in anything, and business building is no exception. In fact the opposite is true. It can take a long time to get traction and momentum in a particular area of your business so you need to buckle up for the ride and grit your teeth (with a smile, of course). Don’t give up until the evidence or the data tells you it’s not working. And even then, there may be another way. Thomas Edison can tell you that.
OK so there’s my top 5 weeds in business.
I’ve experienced all of these and continue to do battle with them (and buying new cans of business weedkiller every day, in various forms and strengths).
Can you relate to these weeds? Which one affects you most? What have I missed?
Every-bud-y can succeed in business.
But you do have to keep pulling out the weeds and turning your head towards the sunshine. Just like in life itself.
Don’t do it alone. Business growth needs buddies alongside. My group programme is kicking off very soon and it’s going to be the best weedkiller ever. Join the waitlist for The Greenhouse here.